LG G7 ThinQ vs. LG G6: Out with the old, in with the new

lg g7 thinq hands on precarious 2
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

LG officially launched its latest flagship — the LG G7 ThinQ. The latest addition to LG’s flagship G series, the G7 ThinQ brings a list of changes — from an updated look to a few new features. As the successor to the LG G6, how do the two stack up against each other? Let’s take a closer look and find out.

Specs

LG G7 ThinQ  LG G6
Size 153.2 x 71.9 x 7.9mm (6.03 x 2.83 x 0.31 inches)  148.9 × 71.9 × 7.9 millimeters (5.86 × 2.83 × 0.31 inches)
Weight 162 grams (5.71 ounces)  163 grams (5.75 ounces)
Screen Size 6.1-inch IPS LCD touchscreen  5.7-inch IPS LCD touchscreen
Screen Resolution 3,120 x 1,440 pixels (564 pixels-per-inch)  2,880 × 1,440 pixels (564 pixels-per-inch)
Operating System Android 8.0 Oreo Android 7.0 Nougat (upgradeable to 8.0 Oreo)
Storage Space 64GB, 128GB  32GB, 64GB, 128GB
MicroSD Card Slot  Yes, up to 2TB  Yes, up to 400GB
Tap To Pay Services Android Pay  Android Pay
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 Qualcomm Snapdragon 821
RAM 4GB, 6GB  4GB
Camera Dual 16MP (with OIS) and 16MP wide angle rear, 8MP front  Dual 13MP (with OIS) and 13MP wide-angle lens, 5MP front
Video Up to 4K at 30 fps, 1080p at 30 fps, 720p at 120 fps  Up to 4K at 30 fps, 1080p at 30 fps, 720p at 120 fps
Bluetooth Version Bluetooth 5.0  Bluetooth 4.2
Ports 3.5mm headphone jack, USB-Type C  3.5mm headphone jack, USB-Type C
Fingerprint sensor  Yes  Yes
Water resistance  IP68  IP68
Battery  3,000mAh

Fast charging, wireless charging (Qi standard)

 3,300mAh

Fast charging, wireless charging (Qi standard)

App Marketplace  Google Play Store  Google Play Store
Network support  All major carriers  All major carriers
Colors Aurora Black, Platinum Grey, Moroccan Blue, Raspberry Rose Astro Black, Ice Platinum, Terra Gold, Marine Blue, Mystic White, Raspberry Rose, Moroccan Blue, Lavender Violet
Price  Starting at $750  Starting at $650
Buy From  Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile
Review Score 3.5 out of 5 stars  4.5 out of 5 stars

Performance, battery life and charging

lg g7 thinq hands on back full 2
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

The LG G7 ThinQ packs a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor, which is a major upgrade from LG G6’s Qualcomm Snapdragon 821. You can expect the G7 ThinQ to be much faster and far more powerful since it’s running on one of the latest chipsets. As far as RAM, both phones offer 4GB but you can opt for 6GB instead with the G7 ThinQ if you need the extra memory.

When it comes to the battery, the LG G6 packs a larger 3,300mAh battery in comparison to the LG ThinQ’s 3,000mAh battery. But in our LG G6 review, we saw poor battery life in the beginning until a software update improved the situation. LG also says that it has reduced the screen’s power consumption over the LG G6 by 30 percent, and the new processor is more power efficient, meaning the LG G7 ThinQ could potentially offer better battery life, even though capacity is smaller.

The LG G6 only supports Qualcomm’s QuickCharge 2.0 while the LG G7 ThinQ supports QC 3.0 and 4.0. With QuickCharge 4.0, LG claims it can give you up to five hours worth of charge in only 15 minutes — but you need to purchase a specific adapter separately.

With a more powerful processor, fast-charging capabilities, and a battery-saving feature, the LG G7 ThinQ takes it for overall performance.

Winner: LG G7 ThinQ

Design and durability

lg g7 thinq hands on home screen
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

If we’re talking trends, the LG G7 ThinQ is definitely following the latest one in the world of smartphones these days — by including a notch. But if you’re not a fan, there are options to customize it via the settings. When it comes to size, it’s only slightly longer and heavier than the LG G6 and every bit as thin. By comparison, the LG G6 looks a little dated — even with a similar rounded design, its thicker bezels along the top and bottom make it look like the cheaper option.

Another difference you’ll find is that the LG G7 ThinQ has a button on the side to activate Google Assistant. If you long-press it, you’ll activate its walkie-talkie feature which keeps Assistant listening for as long as you are pressing the button. By double-tapping the button, you will have access to Google Lens — which uses object identification with the phone’s camera. You also find the camera is placed vertically above the fingerprint sensor rather than horizontally like it is on the G6. For charging, both phones include a USB-C port but when it comes to the headphone jack, you will find it on the bottom of the LG G7 ThinQ and on the top of the G6.

As for durability, both phones are made of metal and glass with Gorilla Glass 5 on the back making them equally as delicate. The same goes for water-resistance, as both the G7 ThinQ and G6 come with IP68 water-resistance. Either way, you’re going to want to put a case on both of these phones to protect from damage.

With an upgraded design and features that are more easily accessible, such as Google Assistant via the A.I. key, the LG G7 ThinQ is designed to offer a better user experience.

Winner: LG G7 ThinQ

Display

lg g7 thinq hands on full
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

The LG G7 ThinQ packs a 6.1-inch display with a 3,120 x 1,440 pixel-resolution, while the LG G6’s 5.7-inch IPS LCD touchscreen has a 2,880 x 1,440-pixel resolution. The G7 ThinQ has a bit more screen real estate, but they are identical in terms of sharpness. Rather than OLED, both phones use IPS LCD which allows for a brighter screen. The LG G7 ThinQ even has a Super Bright Display feature that allows you to boost the screen to 1,000 nits (for three minutes at a time) during days when it’s super sunny outside. As mentioned earlier, it can also limit screen power consumption (at 500 nits) so you won’t have to sacrifice battery life for a bright, vivid display.

While we found the G6 had a stunning display — filled with color, warmth, and detail — it can’t match the G7 ThinQ. Its successor has a slightly taller screen thanks to its 19.5:9 aspect ratio — in comparison to the G6’s 18:9 aspect ratio. One trait the phones do share in common is that they both have support for HDR 10.

Even though both phones have LCD displays, the tech is improving all the time, so the LG G7 ThinQ wins this round.

Winner: LG G7 ThinQ

Camera

lg g7 news thinq hands on back full black bg

The LG G7 ThinQ has a dual-lens camera on the back, both rated at 16 megapixels, along with an 8-megapixel front-facing camera. It’s definitely an upgrade from the dual 13-megapixel lenses and 5-megapixel front-facing camera in the G6. The G7 ThinQ also has optical image stabilization and the wide-angle lens can take photos with a 107-degree angle. By comparison, the LG G6 has a wide-angle lens with a 125-degree angle, but you will see more distortion at the edges of shots. Both also have a manual mode for those who want to adjust the settings.

The G7 ThinQ also has artificial intelligence integrated into its camera — if you point at an object, the A.I. will identify what it is, whether it’s a plant, soda can, etc. There is also Portrait mode available on both the rear and front-facing cameras which we found worked well for the most part.

The LG G7 ThinQ’s camera allows you to take pictures in low light with its Super Bright Camera mode which darkens images by enlarging its pixels. We found the G6 ‘s camera seemed to struggle on days that were overcast, but took great nighttime shots, especially when using the wide-angle lens with the right lighting. Photos taken in the daytime were extremely crisp and bright as well.

When comparing both specs and photos, the G7 ThinQ is the obvious choice. The camera’s software has far more features that allow you to be even more creative with your pictures and the hardware is slightly improved.

Winner: LG G7 ThinQ

Software and updates

lg g7 thinq hands on notification shade
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

The LG G7 ThinQ ships with Android 8.0 Oreo, and we didn’t experience lag or slowdown. There wasn’t too much bloatware loaded on the device either. Meanwhile, the G6 ships with Android 7.0 Nougat which launched two years ago. It was recently announced that the G6 would soon be receiving the Android 8.0 update, but it hasn’t at the time of writing. Both have LG’s user interface placed over Android with a few additions to make the experience better.

With the release of Android P coming up, it’s unclear when the G7 ThinQ will receive the update. But of the two, you’re better off with a device that comes with Android’s most recent operating system right out of the box and we would expect the newer G7 ThinQ to receive updates for longer.

Winner: LG G7 ThinQ

Special features

lg g7 thinq hands on music
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

As mentioned previously, the G7 ThinQ includes an A.I. key on the left side which allows you to enable voice recognition with Google Assistant. By holding it down, you can also use the walkie-talkie feature to speak to Google Assistant for even longer. Both devices also include a headphone jack along with QUAD DAC.

Music lovers will also appreciate the boombox speaker on the G7 ThinQ. By removing the module that originally covers the speaker, LG managed to turn the whole phone into a resonance chamber providing enhanced, loud sound for audio.

The G6 isn’t as impressive — with only new software features to highlight, like the Square Camera which splits your screen, with the top half for square format pictures and the lower half for either custom shots or previews.

Winner: LG G7 ThinQ

Price

We’re still waiting on the final price for the LG G7 ThinQ, but we’ve learned it costs $750 on T-Mobile. That’s $100 more than the G6, which cost $650 at launch. Both phones will work on all major carriers, though AT&T is not selling the device, and those in the U.S. will be able to snag the G7 ThinQ starting the first week of June.

Overall winner: LG G7 ThinQ

As the successor to the LG G6, you would expect the G7 ThinQ to take the winning title. Not only does the G7 ThinQ have a more powerful processor under the hood, it offers a larger display, A.I. features, and an upgraded look. If you’re stuck between the two, the G7 ThinQ will provide you with the latest, high-end specifications, and a better user experience.

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